Starbucks proposed for one of last vacant spots along Uptown
A Starbucks is being proposed for an empty corner lot at NW 23 and Robinson Avenue — one of the last undeveloped properties along Uptown.
Until a few years ago, the corner was home to a two-bay car wash built in 1966. A salon was located on the adjoining grassy lot until it was torn down a decade ago. The property is being developed by Ryan McNeill, who is also leading a larger mixed-use development, OAK, at the corner of Northwest Expressway and Pennsylvania Avenue.
“The value of this corridor to Oklahoma City is hard to over-emphasize,” McNeill said. “Few other parts of town have seen the revitalization 23rd Street has seen in the last 10 years.”
In just the past decade, Uptown 23rd has seen the redevelopment of the long-abandoned iconic Tower Theatre and the opening of shops, restaurants and bars. The corner of NW 23 and Robinson Avenue is the last undeveloped property along NW 23 between Broadway and Shartel Avenue, a stretch that was once lined with several abandoned and vacant properties.
The proposed Starbucks is a 2,100-sqare-foot shop that, if approved by the city’s Urban Design Committee, would be located on the northwest side of the property with a drive-thru lane wrapping around the sides of the building facing the street.
The shop will include an outdoor patio and the facade will consist of wood veneer planks, brick and brick veneer, aluminum and insulated glass. Discussions, meanwhile, are underway with owners of the Carl’s Jr. to the east to link the two properties to improve access for both properties to and from nearby signalized intersections.
McNeill said the site design went through several incarnations as he sought to minimize the impact on residential neighbors to the south. He said a timeline won’t be finalized until after the community is provided a chance to provide feedback.
“Two of the biggest things we’ve done from a sight-planning perspective is to push the building to the street and to attempt to gain cross access with Carl’s Jr.,” McNeill said. “The staff at planning and the neighborhood guidelines have endorsed these and it’s the right advice, in our opinion.”